After a disappointing exit from the ICC World Cup 2019 in the semi-final against New Zealand, Team India is looking ahead for their next big challenge. The seventh edition of the ICC T20 World Cup tournament will be held next year in Australia from October 18 to November 15.
Team India is still in the process of identifying more players, giving opportunities to a lot of youngsters in upcoming T20I tournaments. The recent T20I series against South Africa ended 1-1 as the Proteas comfortably defeated India in the 3rd T20I by nine wickets.
In a recent interview with Firstpost, former Indian pacer Zaheer Khan shared some of his thoughts on Indian all-rounder Hardik Pandya, especially his power-hitting ability.
“Hardik has spent enough time working towards it (power-hitting). First and foremost, he is someone who likes hitting a lot of balls in the nets and work towards achieving consistency in his power-hitting. Over and above that, you have got to have the basic power-hitting ability, which he has. The practice makes it perfect,” told Zaheer.
On being questioned if Hardik can be the X-factor for the team heading into T20 World Cup, Zaheer mentioned that Hardik does bring a lot of balance to the side.
“He does change the balance of the team, and that’s the balance which we were talking about. So, if a team has that kind of option, it really gives the side the luxury to play an extra bowler or an extra batsman. You can use his services as just a pure batsman and then add a specialist bowler, or you can just look at him as someone who will give you those four overs. And then play an extra batsman,” said Zaheer.
In the ICC World Cup 2019, Hardik scored a total of 226 runs with an average of 32.28.
“It was difficult, and we all felt the same pain, but life moves on. I would have been more upset if we as a team hadn’t done justice to our performance. I think as a team we played as champions, and except for those 30 minutes, I thought we played outstandingly and everyone was contributing and looking to excel. It is just how it is at the knockout stage. We have kind of moved on, and we want to focus on the next World Cup (WT20) and win that,” said Pandya during an interview earlier this month.